The Green Agenda for the Western Balkans came as part of the presentation of a 9 billion euros Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans adopted by the European Commission in early October. The majority of this support would be directed towards key productive investments and sustainable infrastructure in the region.
During the summit organized in Sofia within the Berlin Process, established to help the integration of the Western Balkan countries into the European Union, the leaders of the Western Balkan countries signed a Declaration on the Green Agenda, expressing their intention to join the path set out by the EU.
The Declaration is in line with the EU’s efforts to combat climate change, protect the environment and unlock the economic potential of the region’s green, low-carbon and circular economy.
The countries of the Western Balkans now have to demonstrate their readiness and commitment to achieving the goals of the European Green Deal, by making a significant contribution to the Green Agenda for the region. The countries are committed to action in five key areas covered by the Green Deal: decarbonization, water and soil, circular economy, farming and food production and protecting biodiversity and air pollution.
The 16 coal-fired power plants in the region emit more sulfur dioxide than the entire 250 similar plants in the EU. In this respect, moving away from coal would improve the quality of life and bring important health-related annual savings to the Western Balkan budgets.